Topps 2023 Card Rankings
Tier One Sucks
As many of you know, this year, we started doing a lot of breaks over the summer and then continued to do personal boxes for people when requested. Doing breaks was a weird world. It was fun, but it was a lot of work, and I don’t have the personality to get excited for an autograph of some no-name player to hype up the ten people watching the stream. So, I stopped and began focusing more on collecting for myself and doing personal boxes for people who do not have access to local card stores like I do.
A question a lot of people have asked me on Twitter what I think the best set from this year is. I figured I would make a list of all of them that I have either opened, bought a pack, been part of a break, or bought a single from.
There is plenty of bias here based on how I did in an opening or break. I try and not let that get in the way too much, but it definitely does for this first one.
#25 Tier One
Tier One sucks. It is an overpriced product that guarantees you “hits” that end up being players who are not even in the league anymore. We opened, I believe, four of these for a break. Only ONE of the autographs was someone relatively with something. It was a Bert Blyleven /299. Obviously, any HOFer is cool, but it’s a $30 card in a product that was selling for $250.00.
I believe the price has gone down, which is necessary if any store wants to sell this. Look, I can live with getting a Jeter Downs autograph in Topps Series 1. However, when you are only getting three cards in this box, and the two autographs combine to be $15 total value(this happened on two of the boxes), then you are never going to see me buy the product again.
#24 Holiday Collection
The only thing I got out of the Holiday Collection was a cool giveaway. It’s a cool idea, but frankly, the cards do not look that good. There is just too much going on, and trying to find the SP or SSP is very difficult. I would rather spend an extra $15 and get a Bowman Mega Box.
We opened one of these for a break that we did over the summer. I didn’t hate them, and I like that there are three autographs in the box. Again, the common theme here is that the price is just too high for a product that you can end up with $3 autos. We were able to get a cool-looking Corbin Carroll auto/relic for a giveaway, and that card was half the price of the box. They are cool-looking cards, but not cool enough for over $450.00.
#22 Bowman Chrome
I never personally opened any of Bowman Chrome, and I probably never will. If I did spend money on this, then it probably would have been ranked last in my rankings. The only thing putting it here is the Babe Ruth card. I am a sucker for an insert like this, and although I know the bounties are just ways for people to chase the product, I still like them. I entered a few breaks of this and was able to get a Joendry Vargas, which I will hold onto. Prices of this seem to be dropping, so if you want to chase a Ruth or Ethan Salas, it might be worth it.
#21 Chrome Black
I lied when I said all these sets I have opened or bought cards from. This one I watched someone open it. I have also watched all the breaks online. Oh my goodness, it seems terrible. This came out soon after Inception, which, for the same price, is a WAY better product. I still see these listed for over $150 dollars. It should be a $100 product. They aren’t good-looking cards, and you can end up with Mark Appel autos, which only Mark Appel would buy.
#20 Archive Signature Series
Archive Signature Series is not a good product by any means. However, it is at least somewhat decently priced. We added these to the breaks we were doing, and I would say of the 12 boxes we opened, about 5 or 6 ended up being Hall of Famers. You can get these now for around $60, which, compared to what you get with Chrome Black, is an absolute steal.
#19 Topps Finest
You’re gonna spend over $200. You probably will get screwed with the auto, but you are gonna get some nice-looking cards. We did a few boxes of this for our breaks and they were a pretty popular product amongst our followers. They truly are just great-looking cards, and the inserts are very good. However, again, for the price, I would not buy it again.
#18 Series 1/Topps Update
I started collecting again this year right when Series 2 was about to come out. So, I bought a bunch of Series 1 to see what it was like. At the time, I thought, “Wow, this is amazing!” Until quickly realizing these are the cheapest cards and immediately lose value when Chrome comes out. I will steer clear this coming year, but these cards will always hold a special place in my heart.
Topps Update was useless as Update Chrome was so soon after.
#17 Cosmic Chrome
I only entered a few breaks of Cosmic but never opened it myself. Everyone I talk to seems to love this product, and I don’t really have a major opinion on it, which is why it is here in the middle. The problem for me is for over $450, I would want a guaranteed autograph in the box. This doesn’t provide it. So, I have to put it here.
#16 Topps Chrome Logofractor
The store I got to has had these boxes twice. Both times, the college worker, shouting out Julian, has swayed me to buy them. I will admit they are freaking cool-looking cards. I will also admit the price is too high. For around $185 there should be better odds for autos. However, any numbered parallel of a rookie from this set is worth a pretty penny. I got a nice Michael Harris II from an opening which I will hold onto.
#15 Gilded Collection
I think this is the most expensive product on this list. So, I am being a total hypocrite by putting this as mid-tier. But these cards are so pretty, and I have snagged some singles for cheap. Now, if I was opening this product I would probably go crazy. Right now, it would cost you about $700.00 to get a box. It is something that I know I will never personally open, but I can appreciate how cool the cards are.
#14 Bowman Platinum
My girlfriend got me a box of this as a gift. It is a reasonably priced $100 box that will give you two autographs. The checklist is eh, and the cards aren’t the best quality. But I got two Mikey Romero and Ceddanne Rafaela autos, so as a Red Sox fan, I was happy.
#13 Topps Archive
Small caveat with this one. I would suggest buying the collectors box that comes with the lunchbox. The cards have a very cool design, and you get at least one autograph. I think I got a Brian Wilson auto which is fine, but I have seen some pretty terrible autographs come out of this. For around $80 at release, I felt like this was the better buy than the hobby box. I still feel that way. If you weren’t getting the collectors box, I would drop this somewhere in the 20s.
This is strictly this high for nostalgic reasons. I had a lot of the 1974 design as a kid, so when I saw these it brought me back to the young Dean days. Value-wise, there is little to be desired. I would say out of everything, these are probably the cheapest cards. I have not, and do not plan to, buy any singles of this. They just aren’t that appealing to the eye and, for the most part, won’t gain value as the years go on.
#11 Museum Collection
Big fan of the look and feel of these cards. I have not bought a box, $450 is out of my price range, but I have entered some breaks of it. Outside of Inception, this is the nicest relic cards that have come out this year. If you are looking to start collecting again, I would suggest going for singles of Museum, Tribute, and Inception. They aren’t as expensive as the Chrome counterparts, but they look 10x better.
#10 Bowman Sterling
I wanted to put this in the top three because it is the set I have done best in by far. I have pulled two Jackson Holliday’s from this box. One /99 graded a PSA 10, and another /10 is currently getting graded. However, it is a very expensive set, and the autos do not hold value outside the absolute bangers. Also, you have the potential to pull five terrible prospects as your hits. The black lava cards might be the best-looking cards of the year, so this cracks the top ten.
#9 Chrome Update
I would have put this with Topps Chrome, but I was kind of disappointed with all the openings we did of this. We opened a whole case and got $200 worth of value back. To me, that is insane! However, the 1/1 rookie debut cards are a cool chase, so. won’t completely drop this to the bottom.
#8 Chrome Sapphire
I have done a bunch of breaks with Friar Breaks on Twitter. He has gotten a lot of Chrome Sapphire Update series over the past month. Let me tell you, these cards are gorgeous. The black /10s in this set are as pretty as the black lavas in Sterling. If you are deciding between getting a Logofractor box and this, spend the extra money and get one of these boxes.
Editors Note: I am gonna honor where I put this. However, I did another break with Friar Breaks (Check him out on Twitter), and I hit an Anthony Volpe auto and an Adley Rutschman /50 gold parallel. This is easy in my top 5 now.
#7 Pro Debut
I will get a lot of slack for this one, but let me explain. This was the first case break we ever did(probably the last lol.) It was a lot of fun to sit there for hours just ripping boxes. There are so many autos and hits in these boxes, so even though the players are wearing their minor league uniforms, you still get a rush from all the hits.
#6 Topps Chrome
I never got anything crazy in Topps Chrome this year. Honestly, we didn’t open too much of it. But I had a lot of fun when I did. It also made me realize how useless keeping paper cards was once I started seeing how much nicer Chrome was. For 2024, I will just wait till Chrome comes out rather than spend any money on Series 1 and Series 2.
This was my first foray into the very expensive boxes. We did a few breaks of these in July, and we were hitting crazy cards right away. Gunnar auto, Carroll auto, multiple HOFers, etc. It was great, and the base cards were beautiful. I held onto a few of the base cards for my PC. The rest are in the giveaway box because people need to experience these bad boys in person.
#4 Allen & Ginter
This probably should be more mid-tier, but I am putting it here because it seriously surprised me with how fun it was to open. I thought having non-baseball people in the product would water it down. However, it made it fun, and I was able to share it with non-baseball fans like my girlfriend, who was wowed by her reality TV stars being on a card.
#3 Bowman Draft
I am a whore for Tom Brady. That is all.
#2 Series 2
I pulled a Mike Trout autograph out of this. It was damaged, so I am fighting Topps to get a replacement. As I said previously, I probably won’t open any of the 2024 series two now that I realize how worthless the cards end up being after Chrome comes out.
This one is probably going to take some people by surprise. However, these are easily the prettiest cards that came out this year. Also, I love the fact that you are guaranteed at least one autograph but have a very good chance of hitting two. This is something we did a lot in our openings. Also, the breaks I entered were very good to me as I hit a beautiful Adley Rutschman RPA /25.
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